Oct 21, 2018

Thai Style Mint and Basil Chicken Stir-Fry

My earlier shiso chicken tenders recipe post was the result of absent mint leaves. Luckily, I finally managed to find a steady source of mint supplies at a grocery store inside a nearby department store. So here's what I intended to make before.

Thai style mint and basil chicken stir-fry -


  • 240 grams chicken tenders
  • 1 cup mint leaves
  • 3/4 cup basil
  • 1 purple onion
  • 2 garlic cloves
  • 2 red chilies
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons oyster sauce
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons lemon juice (plus 2 lemon wedges, optional)
  • 1 tablespoon sugar
  • 1 teaspoon grated ginger
  • 1/8 teaspoon salt
  • 1/8 teaspoon black pepper
  • Some fish sauce (optional)


Remove the tendons from chicken tenders and cut the meat into smaller pieces. Destem and slice the red chilies diagonally. Peel and roughly chop the garlic cloves. Peel and dice the onion. Peel and grate the ginger. Slice the lemon into wedges and squeeze some to get about 1 1/2 tablespoons of juice. Chop the mint and basil leaves.

Drizzle some olive oil to coat the bottom of the pan. Turn to medium high heat. Add in chopped onion along with 1/8 teaspoon of salt and 1/8 teaspoon of freshly ground black pepper. Cook till the onion turns slightly translucent.

Add in garlic, chilies, and grated ginger, cook till aromatic but not burning the garlic.

Transfer the chicken over, give it a few flips and wait till about half way cooked through.

Add in 2 tablespoons oyster sauce and 1 tablespoon of sugar, cook for about 30 seconds.

Transfer chopped mint and basil over and give it a quick stir. Pour in lemon juice and cook till nearly dried up. Taste and adjust with fish sauce if a saltier taste is preferred.

Plate and sprinkle some black pepper over, and serve with lemon wedges.

Who said that mint leaves can only be used in drinks and dessert? I love how South Eastern Asian cuisine incorporate such aromatic herb to stir-fry dishes. Sourish, spicy, and salty, but yet all balanced with that refreshing touch. 

Other Asian stir-fry recipes:

Oct 15, 2018

Fileja Pasta with Chorizo and Bell Pepper Sauce

Best thing about this recipe is that you can make the sauce ahead and store in either the fridge or freezer. Perhaps prep the sauce during the weekends. When hunger calls, just heat it up and mix in cooked pasta right before meal time. For sure this recipe can save you from hassles during hectic working days.

Fileja pasta with chorizo and bell pepper sauce -

Ingredients (about 5 to 6 portions)?

  • 500 grams/1 pack tri-color fileja pasta (can be substitute with other type of short pasta)
  • 0.4 lb chorizo
  • 2 red bell peppers
  • 1 can diced tomatoes
  • 1 purple onion
  • 2 garlic cloves
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes
  • 3 tablespoon chopped basil
  • 3 tablespoons chopped parsley
  • Some aged Parmigiano Reggiano


Peel and slice the onion. Peel and roughly chop the garlic cloves. Cut the chorizo into smaller pieces. Remove the seeds and ribs from bell peppers and cut into smaller pieces too. Finely chop the basil and parsley.

Bring a big pot or pan, drizzle 1 1/2 tablespoons olive oil. Add in onion, chorizo, 1 teaspoon of salt, 1/2 teaspoon of black pepper, and 1/2 teaspoon of red pepper flakes. Turn to medium high heat and sear till some of that red oil starts to render from chorizo.

Add in garlic and bell pepper, continue to sear for another minute or so.

Pour in drained dice tomatoes and cook for few more minutes.

Turn off the heat and stir in chopped basil and parsley. Let the whole thing cool down for 5 to 10 minutes.

Scoop these ingredients to the food processor. Give it a few pulses and blend till nearly smooth, small chunks are fine, which and add a rustic touch to the dish. If prepping the sauce ahead of time, simply store the sauce to the fridge and serve in three days, or store in the freezer for up to weeks.

Meanwhile, prepare a big pot of water and add in few pinches of salt. Bring to a boil and cook the pasta till almost al dente.

Back to our blended sauce, pour that back into the pot and turn to medium heat to slowly heat it up. When the pasta is ready, drain well and pour the pasta right into the red sauce. Mix till combined and cook for another minute, so the pasta and the sauce and bind together.

Plate the pasta and grate some aged Parmigiano Reggiano all over right before serving.

It's totally a western dish, but somehow after I drizzled some Tabasco sauce over the pasta, the red sauce taste very similar to a Taiwanese spicy ground pork canned food. Who would have thought such a foreign meal can bring out my Asian childhood memories?

Other pasta recipes: